How are you spending your spare time during the winter months? One of the best ways is in your workshop making projects for the home and to give to your family and friends. For the benefit of those who know little or nothing about a workshop, POPULAR SCIENCE MONTHLY is presenting a series of articles on the subject.
WELL, I took it in stride when “glass bricks” for building purposes first put a literal meaning in the old adage about “people who live in glass houses.” Now I hear that cars may be made with transparent-plastic tops. My heart goes out in pity for the modern youth and gal when cars no longer afford privacy consistent with the needs of those moments of “engine trouble.”
AUTOMATIC stop lights for bicycles are made possible by an invention worked out by Thomas J. and James M. Murray, of Chicago, Ill. A battery-operated stop light mounted on the rear fender of a bicycle is controlled by a switch installed on the bottom fork of the vehicle frame, close to the lower run of the driving chain.
SHORT CIRCUITS resulting from dust, dirt, or tiny bits of metal getting down between the threaded metal end of a light bulb and the socket into which it is screwed, are prevented by a small collar made of molded rubber. The collar is fitted over the open end of the socket to form a preventive seal against the entrance of particles that might cause a “short.”
THIN sheets of stainless steel bonded to an inert mineral backing form a new type of strong, rigid paneling for use in building construction. Fireproof and weather-resistant, the novel material reflects about ninety percent of all the heat rays striking its polished surface, is practically free from warping, and has the quality of absorbing sound.
SYNTHETIC-RESIN finishes, as well as paint, varnish, enamel, or shellac, are easily removed from a surface with a solvent just marketed. Said to be harmless to hands, clothing, or the surface treated, the substance is brushed on and allowed to set.
WHEN dissolved in water, a new chemical cleaner forms foamy suds, which are applied to a rug, rubbed in lightly, and allowed to evaporate. By this process, it is said, dirt is removed and a chemical coating is formed around rug threads, preventing wear.
Q.—WE ARE remodeling part of our cellar into a recreation room. Can you tell me if there is any preparation which would be less expensive than stain, with which we could darken the joists and other wooden ceiling members to a color approximating walnut stain?
WITHIN A GENERATION, AN INFANT INDUSTRY HAS GROWN UP TO GIANT SIZE, PROFOUNDLY INFLUENCING OUR MANNER OF LIVING
E. W. MURTFELDT
STREAMING up the steps of the Grand Central Palace in New York City a few weeks ago, eager crowds milled into the spacious exhibition halls where sleek, polished 1940-model automobiles gleamed in the glare of a thousand lights. Salesmen eagerly talked about 100-horsepower engines, dashboard styling, and the sweeping flow of fenders.
BY ADDING a perforated metal disk, attached to an elevating screw, to the bowl of an ordinary smoking pipe, Harold T. Blum, of Millersburg, Ohio, has devised a pipe operating on a new principle. It is filled and lighted in the ordinary way. Then, from time to time, the elevating screw is given a turn, pushing the tobacco upward.
ELECTRICAL ears, tuned in to catch faint sounds that indicate flaws in finished products, are now being used in American factories. Deaf to all sounds except the particular squeak or rattle they are set to pick up, such “industrial noise analyzers” can be used to warn assembly-line inspectors of defective motors or similar machines.
ELIMINATING the necessity of making complicated templates, a new protractor simplifies the work of marking pipes for cutting in preparation for welding joints. To determine the angle at which the cut is to be made, the user sets an indicator on a 180-degree scale.
TO PROVIDE radio listeners with the most efficient coverage of war news, from all fronts, the Columbia Broadcasting System is now operating a specially designed studio in New York City that serves as a nerve center for news. From the middle of the studio, announcers at the microphone table can look through a plate-glass window in one wall into the office of the director of the network’s news service; through a second wall window into the news room where a staff is receiving and editing late news bulletins; through a third to the master control booth; and through a fourth to a soundproof listening room where a corps of linguists listen to and interpret incoming short-wave programs from stations all over the world.
IF YOU can operate a typewriter, it should be the easiest thing in the world to play a novel musical instrument recently invented by Alexander Rose, a court reporter in the Borough of the Bronx, New York City. Resembling a small portable typewriter in appearance, the novel instrument is played by typing out words on keys, following a written score in the form of words inscribed on a sheet of paper, thus eliminating the necessity of learning to read musical notation.
CALLED the most perfectly preserved specimen of its kind in the world, the skull of a Neanderthal man, member of a race that inhabited the earth many centuries ago, was discovered recently on an altar in a cave at Monte Circeo, an Italian seaside resort some fifty miles from Rome.
OLD wire wheels, salvaged from junked automobiles, are welded together to form a novel fence around a used-car lot in San Jose, Calif., which also boasts a gateway whose hinge posts consist of upright automobile drive shafts, connected at their tops by a muffler and exhaust pipe.
A SHRUG of the shoulders is all that is required to tighten a corset fitted with a novel automatic slide fastener now available. Raising the shoulders exerts a tug on the corset shoulder straps which in turn pull the slide fastener upward to close it.
MOUNTED one above the other on a central vertical shaft, shelves containing compartments of various sizes for tools and machine parts can be revolved to make their contents quickly available. A typical example of the advantage of the rotating parts shelves over stationary types, the manufacturer claims, occurred in a Detroit, Mich., automobile plant where the device doubled the speed of serving parts to men.
BOMBARDING the skin and scalp with a vapor shot from a gun is a new type of beauty treatment that is said to cleanse and tone up the skin. The vapor, consisting of steam and active oxygen, or ozone, produced by an electric arc, is sprayed into the hair to treat the scalp, or over the skin, as shown in the illustrations below and at the right.
BROKEN GLASS, which keeps its cutting edges many times longer than pebbles, is by far the most effective form of grit a chicken can have in its gizzard for grinding up and deriving most nourishment from its food, according to Dr. George S. Oliver, Los Angeles, Calif., agricultural scientist.
ALTHOUGH at first glance it appears to be only a house fly perched on a hen’s egg, the novelty pictured at the left is actually a handy tape measure. Pulling out the artificial leather fly unreels the tape measure from a drum inside the painted steel egg.
BUILT to a scale of one inch to the foot, a remarkable working model of a railroad wrecking crane designed and constructed by Aaron F. Scoblic, of Milwaukee, Wis., will lift more than double its own weight of 155 pounds. Powered by a quarter - horsepower electric motor, the crane is operated from the side of the revolving cab by means of four control levers, each of which has a forward, neutral, and reverse position.
FARMERS drive their cattle over railroad crossings with complete safety by using a novel system recently established. Using a telephone installed near the crossing gate, the farmer calls the railroad signal man and ascertains if near-by track sections are free of approaching trains.
OPERATING with a reciprocating movement, a new workshop power tool will chip, saw, file, burr, and hone, performing many jobs such as die sinking, and pattern, tool, and plasticmold making. Powered by a 110-volt universal motor, the tool weighs only one pound.
MANUFACTURING a patented product in a basement workshop after school hours, three Minneapolis, Minn., boys, Stewart Sumner, Dick Fjellman, and Oliver Engebretson, have made a flying start toward business success. Their product is a wooden variety of the ocarina, the familiar musical “sweet potato” usually made of clay.
DIALS, similar to those used on metropolitan telephones, are now employed for speeding up the transmission of telegraph messages. Operators in New York City, Bridgeport, Conn., and Washington, D. C., need only to twirl a dial to connect their offices by direct circuit with the main telegraph offices at Boston, Mass., Chicago, Ill., Cleveland, Ohio, Baltimore, Md., and other leading cities.
SPEEDY changing of drills is made possible by a new chuck recently introduced by a Chicago, Ill., tool manufacturer. According to the maker, the chuck permits drills to be changed safely without stopping the machine, a slight upward movement of a knurled sleeve releasing the drill.
POST CARDS with compartments into which you can slip snapshots, are now available. Ends on the card fold back over the picture to protect it. When the card reaches its destination, these ends can be bent to turn the card into an easel frame.
EXTENDING three stories below and three stories above the street floor of a giant skyscraper, an 800-car, air-conditioned garage at Rockefeller Center effectively solves the car-parking problems for visitors to mid-town New York. Spiral ramps allow the cars to be distributed quickly to the different levels, while powerful fans continuously suck away air contaminated by the car exhausts.
WHAT is the speediest camera in the world ? According to General Electric experts, the title belongs to a new camera developed by W. K. Rankin, Philadelphia, Pa., engineer, that shoots pictures at the rate of 120,000 a second. Designed to photograph electric arcs so that their behavior can be studied in circuit breakers and other electrical apparatus, the camera is cylindrical in shape and is surrounded by a steel case large enough for a man to work in, thereby providing its own darkroom.
RESEMBLING an enlarged chart of a family tree, the novel panel shown in the background, above, has been helping Philadelphia detectives and prosecutors keep track of a sensational series of murder trials. The first line lists twenty victims allegedly poisoned for profit by an “arsenic ring.”
THERE'S no need to up-end heavy barrels, when a new type of funnel is used to replenish their contents. With its spout inserted in the bunghole, the funnel stands securely in place. Built-in brackets rest against the end of the barrel to support it, as shown in the illustration below.
BY PAINTING Lima beans in fancy colors, Stanley Nowicki, of Grand Rapids, Mich., has found a new and profitable occupation. His customers are establishments that conduct games of “Beano,” a pastime resembling “Bingo” or lotto, in which the dried beans are used as markers on numbered cards.
RECENTLY, three California educators announced the perfection of a scientific test which analyzes your personality and ability to get along with the world just as the familiar intelligence test reveals the quality of your mind. Three years of research and experiment went into their psychological questionnaire. The scientists, Drs. Ernest W. Tiegs and Louis P. Thorpe, of the University of Southern California, and Willis W. Clark, Director of Administrative Research for Los Angeles County schools, worked out an original list of 1,000 questions.
RESEARCH at an Akron, Ohio, tire factory has resulted in the perfection of a radically new rubber clutch for Diesel and marine engines. Tirelike in shape and construction, the new clutch is operated by air pressure instead of the usual levers and springs.
COLORED clothespins, providing the ingenious youngster with material for making a wide variety of toys, are now being sold in compact kits, containing either sixty-five or 100 spring-type pins. The larger set also contains pulleys and wheels.
CANNED sunshine, absorbed by luminescent powder and flown from Florida with the powder frozen by liquid air to a temperature of 300 degrees below zero F., recently turned on lights in New York City. As the tube thawed out, the powder began to glow, releasing solar energy.
PHOTOGRAPHING field-artillery shells in flight is a plan to be used by British aeronautical experts in designing faster fighting and bombing planes. The pictures, made by fixed-focus cameras on artillery proving grounds, are expected to reveal stresses built up by air resistance around plane noses of various shapes, better than tests made with stationary models in wind tunnels.
Phonograph and Loudspeakers Explain Brewery to Visitors
WHEN a Milwaukee, Wis., brewing company found 5,000 persons a week were visiting its plant, it replaced lectures by regular guides, who had difficulty making themselves heard above the noise of the machines, with talks reproduced by phonograph records and amplifiers.
FIRST of its kind in the world, a “pocket powerhouse” of sensational new design will soon be ready for emergency service in a bombproof tunnel at Neuchâtel, Switzerland. Its machinery, already completed and tested successfully, includes neither towering steam boilers nor other bulky accessories.
NEW SYSTEM OF MILITARY RECONNAISSANCE PRESENTS COMMANDERS WITH AN ACTUAL PICTURE OF CONDITIONS
DRONING high above the earth, out of range of effective anti-aircraft fire, planes of England’s Royal Air Force may soon transmit “televised” images of enemy positions to field headquarters. Details of a British patent issued to the country’s leading television firm, just before the outbreak of hostilities, reveal how territory over which a plane is flying will automatically be scanned to secure information of strategic value.
HOW MODERN FLYERS FIGHT AIR BATTLES AS TEAMWORK REPLACES SINGLE COMBAT
WITH aerial armadas battling in European skies, one of the most dramatic developments of the war has been the rise of the massed air attack. The picturesque ace of yesterday is largely a thing of the past. Single-handed battles aloft have been replaced by the clash of massed engines of destruction, compact, highly-trained groups which act as units.
THIRTEEN years ago, in 1926, Major Frank A. Good, instructor in agriculture at the Provincial Normal School, Fredericton, N. B., set out to produce a “one-tree orchard” as a living monument to the apple-growing industry of the province. He determined to graft every apple grown in New Brunswick on the branches of one tree.
STRAPPED to the back of a television engineer, an overhead boom of lightweight metal tubing carries a microphone that picks up the sound accompaniment for British television programs. In the example illustrated above, the “walking mike” is bringing listeners an assorted selection of bleats from a sheep-shearing center.
AN IMPROVED starting device for foot races, invented by a British scientist, has proved successful in recent tryouts. After giving the preliminary commands through his megaphone, the starter flips an electric switch attached to its handle.
EARS as well as eyes are protected from flying bits of metal, wood chips, dust, and other factory hazards endangering workmen, by the combined safety goggles and ear muffs shown in the illustration. Conventional safety goggles are fitted with the muffs, which weigh only two ounces and are held snugly in place by a springy steel head band.
WHAT is believed to be the longest single run ever attempted by a vehicle of its type was made recently by the fire engine shown in the photograph above, which set out from New York City for a 4,000-mile tour of the United States from coast to coast.
TO SPEED UP freight service, a new system employs automatic loading mechanisms that can transfer loaded, half-carload freight containers between a special motor truck and a railroad flat car, within ninety seconds. When a freight train arrives at its destination, a truck is brought alongside a flat car, a push button is pressed, and a twenty-ton container is automatically transferred to the truck for door delivery.
"IF MY doll could only walk, Mother, she would be almost alive.” So Mrs. Edel Torngren, of Grand Rapids, Mich., set out to make her daughter’s wish come true. She succeeded so well that her invention of a “walking doll,” on which patent rights have been granted her, may find the eye of a toy manufacturer and make her rich.
H. S. HOLSHUE, of Copley, Ohio, never lets the fact that he has been crippled since boyhood interfere with either business or pleasure. He has built up one of the most complete grocery stores in the state, and during his spare time he maneuvers around in his wheel chair adding new buildings to the seventy or more that comprise his remarkable midget village, made entirely from empty orange crates, apple boxes, and other food containers.
WHEN Joseph F. Timilty, police commissioner of Boston, Mass., arrives at his office each morning, he need not pore through written files to find what has happened during the night. Instead, lamps glow upon a large-scale map of Boston and its environs, to show the location of crimes, accidents, and police officers at a glance.
ONE of the 160 intrepid explorers who will make up the party led by Admiral Richard E. Byrd on a new expedition to the South Pole to stake out American claims to Antarctic territory (P.S.M., Nov. ’39, p. 63), is a landscape painter, Leland Curtis, of Los Angeles, Calif., who will supplement the work of photographers in depicting the terrain of America’s newest frontier.
Homemade Three-Wheeled Crane Aids in Transplanting Trees
FOR transplanting orange trees, Ernie Thompson, of Strathmore, Calif., constructed the novel homemade tree mover pictured below. Suspended from a metal frame mounted on three rubber-tired wheels, split halves of an old steel oil drum are lowered on chains, placed around the exposed earth and roots surrounding a tree, and clamped together.
SALVAGED from dusty attics and cluttered basements, more than half a thousand old-time phonograph records form the unique "voices of the past" collection of Robert Vincent, of New York City. William E. Gladstone, English premier under Queen Victoria; P. T. Barnum, the great American showman; Henry M. Stanley, the explorer who found Livingstone; Robert E. Peary, discoverer of the North Pole; Thomas A. Edison, Theodore Roosevelt, and a host of other noted persons speak out of the past through Vincent’s fascinating and historically invaluable file of old records.
ALTHOUGH few persons have ever had a close-up view of the top of the 710-foot antenna tower of radio station KDKA, Pittsburgh, Pa., Byron McGill, National Broadcasting Company official, can show you exactly what it looks like. An amateur photographer, McGill hooked a camera to a four-inch astronomical refractor telescope fitted with a high-power eyepiece to give a magnification of 250.
Dock-To-Boat Communicator Speeds Landing of Barges
MOUNTED on a post near the water’s edge at the Hudson River docks of an oil company in Albany, N. Y., a loudspeaker facilitates two-way communication between captains of incoming oil barges and the dispatcher in the dock office. The unit serves as both a loudspeaker and a microphone, picking up the captain’s words and returning the dispatcher’s.
TATTOOING numbers on the wings of poultry has proved a valuable aid to farmers in eastern states, as a means of foiling chicken thieves. By means of punches composed of sharp needles arranged to form the numbers, indelible ink is inserted in the webbing of the wing back of the bone, making a permanent mark. Each farmer registers his individual number with the state police. In the event of theft, the number is reported and a watch is kept at produce markets for the stolen birds.
A PUZZLE with a cash reward is an innovation in entertainment devices. The puzzle is formed of ten pieces of wood—four pieces with square corners, two crossbars, and four round pegs. A hole drilled into one of the corner pieces permits the person working the puzzle to see a shiny new penny inside.
MAIL your letters from the bottom of the sea. That is the interesting possibility offered by the recent establishment of an underwater post office set up in the photosphere in which the veteran explorer John E. Williamson is making studies of underwater life near Nassau, in the Bahama Islands.
TABLE-TENNIS enthusiasts now can practice and polish up their strokes with an ingeniously simple mechanical opponent invented by Harold W. Frost, of Worcester, Mass. The device, made of boards hinged together so that they can be adjusted to different angles, is set up on one side of the table.
SURROUNDED by transparent walls of unbreakable plastic composition, new-born babies in the Sanitarium Hospital, Portland, Ore., live in tiny individual apartments where the air is completely changed every three minutes, and the temperature is maintained constantly at seventy-four degrees F.
BY THE use of a small trap attachment, portable vacuum cleaners can be used for cleaning out shelves and compartments containing nuts, screws, and other small parts, in a machine shop or factory. With the attachment, dust and dirt are sucked into the cleaner’s dust bag, while any metal objects drawn into the cleaning nozzle are caught in the trap where they can be recovered.
WHEN a coin is dropped into the slot of a new toy savings bank, an inked rubber stamp moves into place over a special deposit book inserted through the front of the metal box. Pushing a lever presses down the rubber stamp to record the amount of the deposit in the book.
HARVESTING field corn or sugar cane is simplified by a novel cutter invented by F. W. Tappen, of Burzaco, Argentina. Bolted to a shoe, the tool is made of steel in the shape of a Y, with the inside edges sharpened. As the harvester walks along a row, he kicks at the base of each stalk, slicing it off cleanly.
AUTOMATIC fire extinguishers, which operate instantaneously in the event of a crash, are being installed in all British military airplanes. A suspended weight reacts to any abnormal shock, releasing a stream of fire-quenching methyl bromide gas.
Boy Builders Plan Long Trip in P.S.M. Cabin Cruiser
FROM plans published in POPULAR SCIENCE MONTHLY, three Buffalo, N. Y., youths, Clifford F. Baker, Jr., 16, C. Morgan Epes, 16, and John Ehinger, Jr., 15, constructed the trim outboard-powered motor boat pictured in the photographs below and at the right.
AIRLINE luggage labels, similar to the stickers placed on passengers’ baggage by steamship companies, have been added to the long list of things collected by hobbyists. Already there are said to be 10,000 enthusiasts who boast valuable collections, several of them containing more than 1,000 items.
ACROSS snow-covered stretches of the upper Alps, Italian troops recently demonstrated the latest equipment for fighting on high-altitude battlefields. One of the innovations which was given a tryout by the mountain fighters was a stretcher on skis.
EXPERT puzzlers have been baffled by the complicated interlocking puzzle devised by Wilfred Hallock, of Huntington Station, N. Y. Suggesting in its shape the familiar wooden Chinesecross puzzle, Hallock’s mechanical teaser is formed of pieces of brass.
Night Prospecting ... A NEW HOBBY FOR AMATEUR MINERALOGISTS
SQUATTING in the darkness at the edge of an unfinished highway in New Jersey, a lone man humped over a gravel pile left by the road builders. In his hand he held a long-barreled, nickel-plated flash light, and though its dim, purple beam was virtually invisible, he was flashing it methodically, back and forth, over the heaped-up rocks.
ALL the goldfish on display in the Franklin Park Aquarium in Philadelphia, Pa., have been fished out of the Schuylkill River flowing by the Aquarium’s front door, although these household pets are not and never have been native to the river.
WITH shattered glass swirling around him; with splintered timbers filling the air over his head; with twenty-foot streamers of flame billowing about his motor cycle, Ken Butler, crash king of the carnival thrill riders, has dared death for years to provide spine-tingling excitement for the crowd.
So THAT seaplanes may be designed primarily for efficiency in flight rather than for overcoming the tremendous water resistance encountered while taking off, Thomas B. Rhines, of West Hartford, Conn., has devised an ingenious launching apparatus.
BECAUSE the latest telephone books and commercial directories of over 1,000 cities in 118 countries had to be easily available for quick reference, a New York publishing firm built the odd rotating library shown at the left. Shelves around its fifty-foot circumference house the reference works, and the entire unit revolves once a minute before clerks placed at desks arranged in a circle around the library’s perimeter.
WOMEN who are sticklers for the latest in fashion may soon be carrying a novel swagger stick that combines a cane with a small purse. Introduced not long ago at a fashionable race track, the novel cane has a purse fastened to it just below the handle.
ONE-HAND operation is made possible in a new pipe wrench which has a lever and ratchet mechanism that replaces the conventional adjustable knurled wheel. To adjust the tension on the wrench jaws, the user pumps a small finger lever, as shown at the left.
SEVERAL years ago, George Daynor, a penniless Klondike gold prospector, moved in on a Vineland, N. J., swamp used as an automobile junk yard. Daynor drained the swamp, located a freshwater brook, and, using only the materials at hand, built the curious homestead pictured at the left.
BRACELETS and necklaces made of real rosebuds are slated to be a popular winter fashion for women, according to Miss Elizabeth Day, of New York City, who invented the flower jewelry shown in the accompanying photographs. Freshly picked dwarf rosebuds are treated with a special preparation to prevent moisture evaporation, and the blooms are then fastened to a bracelet or necklace chain of light metal, fitted with tiny clasps that hold the flowers securely in place.
MAKING model windmills for sale as souvenirs is the novel father-and-son business carried on in the basement workshop of Claude Dunnewin, of Central Park, Mich. The tiny mills bring a comparatively high price since they are all fashioned from small blocks of solid mahogany.
SIXTEEN years ago, Frank W. Bireley, then a poor student trying desperately to earn his way through Stanford University at Palo Alto, Calif., bought an orange squeezer and a few crocks. Before sunup, and late into the night, he sliced the golden fruit, laboriously pressed out the juice, made orangeade, and offered it for sale to restaurants, hotels, and campus eating clubs.
Oxygen Apparatus Is Rigged by Doctor in Emergency Case
NEAR death from the effects of whooping cough from which they had been suffering for two weeks, the four-month-old twin brothers, Charles Louie and Larry Decker Faulkner, of Idabel, Okla., recently were brought through a critical stage of their illness by the quick thinking and resourcefulness of the young country doctor attending them.
FILMS one molecule thick—about one ten millionth of an inch, and utterly invisible—are being studied by scientists at the General Electric Research Laboratory to discover little-understood characteristics of the tiny electrical charges existing on their surfaces.
SIMPLE to install, clamps that permit skiers to walk uphill without sliding backward on the snow are now available. The units, one of which is illustrated above, stay close to the skis when coasting forward, but automatically open the instant the ski direction is reversed.
LOCATED “somewhere in London,” the control room shown in the photograph above forms the nerve center of the British capital’s civilian air-raid defense system. Twin maps, each nine feet square, hang on the wall. With colored pins, the location of each bomb dropped on the city can be marked on one map, and at the same time field units can be dispatched to the spot to render assistance to civilians.
THREE pieces of colored glass, set in a circular plastic holder, provide the stamp collector with a new aid in detecting watermarks. The stamp is placed in a black dish, moistened with benzine, and viewed through the filters. Depending upon the color of the stamp, one of the filters will make the watermark show up clearly.
TINY traces of silver, added to the composition of stainless steel, will do much to overcome the metal’s inability to withstand the corrosive action of salt water, research scientists at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology have discovered.
HOVERING high over the operating table in the Middlesex General Hospital, in New Brunswick, N. J., a huge one-eyed “mechanical monster,” sheathed in sterile white cloth, peers down through a battery of brilliant lights. Designed by Dr. Marshall Smith, New Brunswick surgeon, the strange apparatus is a camera dolly, built to hold a photographer directly over the operating table, so that motion pictures in full color of delicate operations may be made with a close-up viewpoint heretofore impossible to achieve.
TO SAVE himself the cost of a new oxygen mask, Art Bussy, airplane racing pilot, made his own from an automobile-battery hydrometer and a football bladder. Oxygen piped to the bladder is forced as needed into the hydrometer bulb, which is strapped to his head so that his nose sticks through a hole cut into the bulb’s side.
L-SHAPED arms, attached to front and rear bumpers, help motorists to park close to the curb without scraping hub caps or fenders, in a device just marketed. When the tips of the arms touch the curb, electric contacts are closed, lighting a warning lamp on the dashboard.
A PHONOGRAPH record plays a vital part in a novel horse-race game just placed on the market. Players select their horses as represented by markers on a game board. The record is then placed on a phonograph turntable and started. A simulated radio broadcast of an actual horse race is then heard, with the name of the winning horse announced at the end.
SHUFFLEBOARD, a game which commonly requires a considerable amount of space, can be played on a small table-type game board available in game and toy stores. Played by either two or four persons, the game employs sliding wooden disks which are propelled from one end of the rectangular table to the other by means of spring-operated plungers, one at each end of the board, as shown in the photograph at the left.
ESPECIALLY valuable for fire-fighters, a new portable oxyacetylene cutting torch is a self-contained unit weighing only forty-three pounds and fitted with a harness so that it can be strapped to a fireman’s body over a special padded vest.
TEN feet long and three feet high, the terrifying skull of a sixty-foot plesiosaur that inhabited the seas 120,000,000 years ago, was placed on exhibition recently at the Harvard Museum of Comparative Zoölogy, in Boston, Mass. Ninety-two interlocking spiked teeth are embedded in the jaws of the giant.
LAUNCHED into the air by a catapult, a radio-controlled miniature plane tested recently by U. S. Army Air Corps engineers for use as a target for aerial-gunnery practice releases its own parachute and drifts back to earth when its work is done.
ACTION! CAMERA! OFFICERS AND ENLISTED MEN ARE ACTORS IN FILMS THAT SERVE AS DRILLMASTERS FOR RECRUITS IN PEACETIME, AND PLAY A VITAL PART IN NATIONAL DEFENSE
FROM somewhere behind us came the high-pitched whine of the engines of fast-flying aircraft. A few yards ahead of the army truck on whose roof we were riding, a platoon of infantry was marching briskly down the dusty road. The young officer in command turned and stared hard toward the menacing sound of the approaching planes.
ANNOYED by frequent crack-ups that practically demolished his model airplane every time it went into a dive, Ed Carstens, of Warrensburg, N. Y., developed a novel pendulum stabilizing device. When the ship starts to dive, a pendulum hanging down from the fuselage swings forward, operating control lines that automatically adjust the elevators to bring the craft down safely.
ESPECIALLY useful for yachtsmen, hunters, golfers, amateur plane pilots, and other sportsmen, as well as forest rangers and meteorologists, a low-cost wind indicator now on the market is small enough to be tucked into a vest pocket. Built of materials that are nonmagnetic and rustproof, the instrument is made with a dial face calibrated at five-mile intervals up to thirty miles an hour, or at ten-mile intervals up to sixty miles an hour.
“BICYCLE HOCKEY,” in which players are mounted on special bikes equipped with runners instead of on skates, was foreshadowed as a new sport possibility by a recent exhibition at a rink in Brighton, England. Freddie Chapman, riding a curious “ice bike” of his own design, whizzed about the rink wielding a hockey stick in competition with another player mounted on skates in the conventional manner.
FOLDING up into a flat and compact bundle, hardly larger than a brief case, a new collapsible cot is equipped with a handle for transporting it as a piece of luggage. Opened out, the cot provides a hammock-type bed, seventy-three inches long and twenty-seven inches wide.
SWINGING a ten-foot mallet with a combination golf and baseball stroke, the batsman pictured at the top of the page smashes a puck 300 yards down a fairway in the game of hornuss, one of the most ancient sports known, now enjoying a revival of popularity in Switzerland.
HUGE cooling towers that form a part of an electric generating plant at Freemen’s Meadow, near Leicester, England, have been ingeniously camouflaged recently as a protection against the bombing planes of raiding enemy air fleets. Painted like stage scenery, or a mammoth Hollywood outdoor movie set, the vase-shaped cooling towers have a strange and fantastic appearance when viewed close-up, as in the photograph reproduced above, but seen from a distance, it is said, the group is exceptionally hard to identify as the towers of a power plant.
A HAIR-CATCHING suction collar, designed for barber-shop use by Morris Hartzman, of Dubuque, Iowa, collects hair as it falls from a barber’s scissors, sucks it down through a pipe and dumps it in a collection bag similar to that used in a vacuum cleaner.
FIREPROOFING foliage with chemical bombs dropped from the sky is the dramatic new method of fighting forest fires recently tried out in California. Wheeling over the San Bernardino mountains a few weeks ago, Gordon Ingraham, U. S. Forestry Service pilot, demonstrated how the plan will work.
TORPEDOES plunging ahead past her knifelike bow, the high-speed motor torpedo boat shown racing through the waters of the English Channel in the photograph above is an important fighting unit of the British Navy. Tremendously fast, the craft is designed to rely on her speed and maneuverability to offset her lack of armor.
AUTHORITIES estimate that 5,000 different languages are spoken in the world. RIVET HEADS on the outside of a big airplane produce enough resistance at top speeds to require 180 additional horsepower on the plane. GEESE were the first domesticated birds.
A “TRIPLE-THREAT” mask, with interchangeable parts, has just been placed on the market for workmen. Fitted with a wire-screen shield, it is used in babbitting; with a transparent-plastic window, it is suitable for buffing and polishing; with a shielded glass window, it guards a welder.
DEVISED as an aid for cleaning automobiles, a new sponge is shaped to fit the hand and is chemically treated to remove dirt and grime. In addition, there is a pocket in the sponge in which a cake of soap can be placed.
PAPER collars, that kept crickets from eating after they had been sprayed with poison in a Montana laboratory, recently helped determine that sprays are as effective as poisoned grain for killing them.
QUICKER rescue of persons trapped by flames in the upper stories of burning buildings is the purpose of a life-saving elevator for fire departments, developed by Morris Honig, of New York City. In the illustration at the right, Honig is shown with a model of his device staging a theoretical rescue at the window of a tall building.
AUTOGRAPHS of more than 600 Hollywood personalities, that will never be pasted in an autograph collector’s album, adorned the entire surface of an automobile in which Miss Louise Rose, representing the Motion Picture Producers Association, completed a transcontinental tour a short time ago.
MEASURING the exact temperature of the atmosphere high above the earth is the purpose of the giant hornlike device shown at the left, designed by Dr. Charles Heck, of North Carolina State College in Raleigh. Designed to help in forecasting changes in the weather, it takes the temperature of drops of water over a mile up.
MADE of about 3,000 pieces of balsa wood, each cut to fit with an old razor blade as the only tool, a novel amphibian, gas-driven model airplane constructed by John Abate, of Rochester, N. Y., is fitted with wheels which retract through sponsons that serve to balance the hull when the craft is afloat.
HOT DOGS with tender skins are promised by a new process discovered by chemists of a Chicago meat-packing concern. Soaking the casings in pineapple juice softens cel’ tissues, making the skins easier to eat.
SUSPENDED from the dashboard of each truck operated by a California firm, a pendulum carries a small pen which traces a line on a clock-driven, rotating cardboard disk, to chart the truck’s starts, stops, speed, and running time during a day’s operation.
TRAPPING sea lions from an island rookery thirty miles off the coast of California is the unusual business of Capt. George M. McGuire. With two former cowboys as helpers, McGuire spreads a net across the mouth of an island cove into which the sea lions come.
BECAUSE he is unable to wear an ordinary seat-type parachute and still get into the cramped cockpit of his racing plane, Tony Le Vier, six-foot two-inch racing pilot, uses a novel headrest parachute that is said to be the only one of its kind in the world.
BECAUSE make-up applied to the face by daylight stands a good chance of appearing decidedly different in artificial light, specially lighted dressing tables are under consideration by a large eastern manufacturing concern. Buttons would turn on lights to simulate daylight or artificial light, as desired, and the user could thereby apply cosmetics suitable to the occasion.
EIGHTEEN days out of the port of Cork, Ireland, her boilers fed by coal, several barrels of resin, and part of her deck planking, the steamer Sirius chugged proudly into New York harbor on April 23, 1838, the first ship in history to cross the Atlantic Ocean entirely by steam power.
EXTRACTS CONCOCTED FROM ODD MATERIALS AID IN FIGHT AGAINST STRANGE AILMENTS
R. DEWITT MILLER
"IS THAT essence of wood shavings ready yet? You know that carpenter may lose his job if he doesn’t get it right away.” The nurse handed a tiny, red-stoppered vial to the laboratory chief. “Here it is,” she said quietly. “And we’ll have the essence of saddle leather ready by tonight.
A LIGHT for illuminating the mouth of a dental patient, just placed on the market, clamps to the patient’s cheek, thereby freeing him from the glare of external lights and relieving the dentist from the necessity of holding a small light in the patient’s mouth.
STRETCHERS made entirely of metal are now being used in England in first-aid stations set up in readiness for enemy air raids. The tubular frames are bent near the end to form legs. Fitted with metal springs, the stretchers are much stronger and will stand considerably more abuse and hard usage than wood-and-canvas types.
No MATTER what type of electric outlet a tourist finds on his travels, he can be sure to have the use of his electric razor or other electric appliance if he carries a set of plug adapters, now available. The kit, shown in the photograph reproduced above, provides an extension cord and various styles of adapters for use with practically any kind of electric socket.
FRIENDLY insects for fighting beetles that attack asparagus made an unusual shipment in a recent transatlantic flight of the Pan American Airways Atlantic Clipper. Sent by the U. S. Department of Agriculture’s European field station near Paris, France, the flies were to be turned loose in this country to carry on their good work of killing parasites.
BURSTING high overhead with a loud explosion to attract attention, a novel aerial bomb for advertising purposes has just been introduced. At the first glance, spectators see only a huge cloud of smoke as the bomb bursts. In a moment, the smoke clears and a giant object—an oversize copy of the bottle, food package, automobile tire, or other product being advertised—is revealed floating in space.
EXACTLY how does the venom of a deadly water-moccasin, a snake native to the southern United States, act on the vital processes of a human being? That is the problem being tackled by Prof. Robert V. Brown, University of Chicago physiologist, who believes that the answer may provide a way to control hemorrhage and falling blood pressure, for, he states, small doses of moccasin venom have already been used to decrease the susceptibility of human beings to hemorrhages.
FLARING vertical and horizontal lines of various widths and spacing, solid and open squares, rectangles, and other shapes form a queer chart developed by General Electric engineers for checking the adjustment and operation of television cameras.
IT MAKES little difference to Michael Murphy, stunt flyer, and his mechanic, Eddie Leach, whether they land their new plane right side up or upside down. For the novel monoplane is fitted with two sets of landing wheels, one in the usual position and the other on top of the plane.
IN THE odd photograph below, it looks as though some Simple Simon were trying his luck at fishing in a city sewer. However, the picture actually shows a special drilling apparatus that draws a steel wire through a sewer pipe, and cuts off any tree roots growing between joints.
LICENSE HOLDER and key chain are combined in a novel accessory for motorists. Rolled up, a driver’s license or registration certificate is inserted within a hollow tube of plastic material which is attached by a chain to the ignition key of the car.
USING the heat of an ordinary 100watt electric bulb to dry photographic prints, a simple device recently introduced for amateurs permits quick drying and ferrotyping in a minimum of space. The drier consists of a cylinder of chromecoated metal and a canvas cover.
1 Mistletoe is (a) a kind of evergreen tree (b) a parasitic shrub (c) a fern (d) a member of the thistle family. 2 In an automobile, the distributor regulates the flow of (a) gasoline (b) oil (c) electricity (d) water. 3 Divers working at great depths now avoid the “bends” by breathing oxygen and (a) chlorine (b) methane (c) helium (d) nitrous oxide.
Why Is It That a Day Off Just Never Is an Off Day? Gus Tried To Figure That Out All One Busy Morning
EVER since the World’s Fair opened, Gus Wilson had been saying that he was going to take a day off and get a preview of what the world is going to be like tomorrow. But the Model Garage was even busier than usual all summer, so Gus kept putting off his holiday.
WHY YOU SHOULD START A HOME WORKSHOP...AND HOW TO DO IT
EDWIN M. LOVE
What is a home workshop ? A HOME workshop is a place where a man can ride his hobby and indulge his creative bent. As he builds a cabinet, a ship model, or a desk set in copper, his business cares are forgotten, his worries vanish, and he relaxes in body and mind.
The top is a 2" by 12" plank smoothed on top and edges. Lap a board under the rear edge for a tool tray, and another on the back for a rack. Close the left end with a triangular block sloping inward toward the right. Notch upper stretchers to fit the top.
AN EASILY BUILT, MUCH IMPROVED DESIGN WITH FOUR RUNNERS MOUNTED ON SPRINGY FOREAND-AFT PLANKS
J. JULIUS FANTA
SPEEDY, stable, and spinproof, this new ice boat Mercury embodies the latest improvements in design. It is a four-runner craft with long, springy fore-and-aft runner planks. These planks assure resiliency and comfortable riding qualities, yet keep the runners in perfect alignment.
Steam Box for Special Work Built from Two Oil Drums
JOHN G. ROBERTS
FACED with the problem of bending long wooden runners for a motor sled he was making, one amateur mechanic constructed a steam box from two oil barrels, placed one on top of the other, as illustrated at the left. A rectangular opening was cut in the top and bottom of the upper drum and in the top of the lower one to permit the wood to go through into the bottom barrel.
SMALL clamps for model making are easily improvised from a number of commonplace objects. Spring wooden clothespins with the jaws shaped as necessary and steel paper clips are frequently used. A discarded ruling pen is excellent for very small work, as are bobby pins and small bolts with large washers.
Square broken ends of blade and file bevel on outside of one and inside of the other. Band saws should have an even number of teeth. Make the bevel ⅜" long on ½" or narrower blades. Clamp ends in brazing clamp so that backs are in line. Cover the filed surfaces and a piece of silver solder, the size of the joint, with a paste of borax mixed with water.
DESIGNED in the style of a picturesque little Cape Cod cottage, this doll house is an admirable Christmas present. Quarter-inch plywood is used throughout, with the exception of a thicker base, and the whole is assembled with casein glue and brads.
AMATEUR machinists usually enjoy making accessories for their metal-turning lathes, and several of these are shown in the accompanying illustrations. Of all the methods of illuminating lathe work, the tool-post lamp is considered the best.
FOR pouring liquids such as varnishes and oils from square or rectangular cans that have the opening in one corner of the top, the can should be held so that the opening is up rather than down. The opening then remains at a sufficient elevation with respect to the fluid in the can so that nothing escapes until the can is nearly horizontal, and the pouring can be done neatly and without dribbling.
IF OXYACETYLENE welding equipment is available, it is a comparatively simple matter to construct a small punch for making holes in spring steel up to 3/32" thick and mild steel ⅛” thick. The arm is cut from a piece of ½" plate to the end of which is welded a piece of 1" shafting with a hole drilled through it to serve as a guide for the punch.
FOR very finely detailed drafting or bench work on minute parts, a large magnifying glass may be supported by means of a wire frame made as shown below. It holds the glass at the proper distance to keep it in focus, thus leaving both hands free for working.
MUCH time can be saved in using a triangular drafting scale if a rubber band is used as illustrated above to show at a glance the edge being used. A marker, such as a small piece of drafting tape, is attached to the band adjacent to this edge.
DRAFTING tape, now so generally used to fasten paper on drawing boards, is theoretically ideal, but sometimes dirt gets into the gum on the tape and soils the drawing. This can be avoided by applying the tape as illustrated below. A small piece is stuck to the underside of the paper at each corner, gummed side up, with half the width extending beyond the edge.
BY ALTERING a lathe steady rest as illustrated above and adding three ball bearings, work may be turned in it at high speed without being scored by the jaws. Dimensions will have to be adapted, of course, to suit the steady rest, but in this case 1½" ball races were fastened to the jaws in such a way that the rim of the races would bear against the work to be supported.
Rubber-covered copper wires have a safe carrying capacity as indicated in the following table. In wiring fixtures, Nos. 18 and 16 are usually used; the other sizes are for circuit runs, mains, and submains. However, when Nos. 18 and 16 are used in portable cords, they may carry 5 and 7 amperes respectively.
ON THE simplest flat-bottom boats, straight planks can be used for planking, but in the case of all more complicated designs at least some of the planks will be found to take various peculiar shapes. One of the simplest ways to find the correct shape is to clamp the plank to be fitted in place over the framework of the boat and as close to the plank it is to fit against as possible, without forcing; then transfer the shape from the edge of the other plank by means of a pencil compass.
RUBBER suction cups, which are usually black, can be made less conspicuous on walls finished in white or pastel shades by painting them with the elastic white rubber-base coating sold by automobile supply stores for use on the side walls of tires.
EXTENSION lamp cords may be safely supported when necessary by looping rubber Mason jar rings around the cord as shown. The ring may be hooked over a convenient nail or fastened with a thumb tack through the lip. The advantage of this method over using staples or tacks is that the soft rubber will not fray the cord and will “give” somewhat if a sudden strain is applied.
Ornamental Flower Stands Bent from Junked Brake Rods
W. J. V.
ORNAMENTAL flowerpot stands are easily made without either a forge or a welding outfit from ordinary round steel rods such as are used for brake rods on autos. Full-size drawings should first be made on heavy paper, and this gives the craftsman ample opportunity to exercise his originality.
A number of new uses to which to put discarded coat hangers
OLD wire coat hangers provide material for many useful little devices. Several suggestions are given in the accompanying illustrations. The ornamental book ends are each bent from a single piece of wire and may be any desired size. The closet hat holders have a loop at the top and two parallel loops at the lower end to clamp over the edge of a shelf.
SNOW can quickly be removed from sidewalks, provided the fall is not too heavy, by using a small snowplow constructed as illustrated. Three triangular blocks, slotted to receive roller-skate wheels, are screwed to the frame so it will run without dragging.
MUCH effort can be saved in putting on and removing a heavy lathe chuck if a hardwood board about 2" thick is notched to fit the ways and recessed on top so as to hold the chuck in line with the spindle threads. After the chuck has been set on the board, the lathe can be started and the carriage run up against the edge of the board to push it and the chuck up to the spindle as shown ABOVE.
1. Clean surface with sandpaper and steel scratch brush. Wipe with clean rags and denatured alcohol to remove all traces of oil and grease. Do not use gasoline. 2. Radiators, if new and unpainted, should receive a first coat of standard metal primer, which should be allowed to dry hard.
Gabby the Duck Moves Her Head and Bill When Pulled
EIGHT PAGES OF NOVEL CHRISTMAS-GIFT PROJECTS YOU CAN CONSTRUCT WITHOUT DIFFICULTY AND AT COMPARATIVELY LITTLE EXPENSE FOR MATERIAL
E. A. BOWER
GABBY is an expressive little duck who captures the interest of children because of her lifelike movements. When pulled along the floor with a string, Gabby moves her head back and forth, and at the same time opens and closes her bill. Because the mechanical action is very simple, this toy is easily constructed singly or in quantity.
ON ONE side of the unique refreshment tray illustrated at the left are circular recesses for ten beverage glasses so they can be carried without danger of spilling. The other side of the tray is flat for holding plates of sandwiches, cakes, and tea things.
IT IS surprising what beautiful inlay work can be done with ordinary bone. Take, for example, this attractive card or novelty box. The box itself is made from straight-grained ¾ " walnut. The splined miter and rabbet joints are easily prepared on a power saw, although a good job can be done with hand tools if necessary.
THE honest aroma of tarred hemp rope emphasizes the nautical design of this lamp and ash tray. The lamp has a special joint that permits it to be used either on the table or on the wall as a “pin-up” fixture. Both pieces are made of maple. Although the drawings are practically self-explanatory, a few hints may be helpful.
A FAMILIAR sight in early American kitchens was the dough tray. When reproduced in miniature size, one of these curious old boxes will serve as a table container for keeping rolls and muffins hot, or for holding cookies or tea wafers. The design shown is a scale model of a dough tray used by the writer’s grandmother and is typical of those found in the kitchens of the German families of Eastern Pennsylvania before the days of the community baker.
THE length of this simple project determines its use. When 4" long it makes a spice rack; elongated, it becomes a cracker tray. Use 1/64" sheet iron 2¾" wide and as long as desired. Bend 90 deg. to form a V. Cut two disks 2 ½" in diameter from plywood.
BECAUSE of its simplicity, this novel Scottie box for trinkets or cigarettes is well suited to quantity production. The lid is raised by pressure on the tail. The body and legs are made from ¼" plywood, the tail and lid from ½" stock, and the head is cut from a dressed pine “two by two,” which actually measures about 1 ⅝ " square.
CHILDREN often appreciate a simple blackboard at Christmas as much as an expensive gift. When ready-mixed commercial blackboard paint cannot readily be obtained at a local paint or hardware store, a substitute can be prepared by adding a small amount of powdered pumice stone to black enamel.
ANIMAL napkin rings make an immediate hit with children, and with their elders, too. One of the rings, you will notice, has a larger opening for an adult-size napkin. The drawings are half size. The construction for the three—red squirrel, rabbit, and chipmunk—is the same.
PULLED along the floor with a string, this cart rides steadily on three small wheels while the squirrel at each side of it jumps along in a lively manner. Large eccentric wheels fastened to the squirrels, but not to the cart, cause this movement.
THE base and back panel of this decorative stationery holder is 18-gauge sheet copper, lined and hammered. The front, which is 22-gauge copper is well hammered with a planishing hammer for smoothness and to make the material springy. A ship, Scottie, or any ornamental figure may be applied to the front.
THIS modern fireplace can be constructed by the average craftsman without the use of power tools. Besides being an ornament, it has shelves for books, and space has also been allotted for the installation of a radio, if desired. The hearth A is a piece of five-ply veneer on which are glued and screwed blocks B, C, D, and N. B and C are ½" wider in the rear than in the front.
BEFORE the Civil War, one of the finest and fastest cutters in the old United States Revenue Marine, forerunner of our present Coast Guard, was the Joe Lane. She is the prototype of our new ship model, illustrated on the facing page. If you have completed the hull and deck fittings as described in the first installment, you are ready to make the masts and yards as follows:
Simplified Switchboard CONTROLS MODEL RAILWAY SYSTEM
C. ELMER BLACK
ADAPTABLE to any size model-railway system, this switchboard groups all the controls at your finger tips so you can execute the most difficult train movement with ease. Cut the 12" by 18" panel from pressed composition wood of tempered quality or similar board, and construct a box from 13/16" stock to fit flush with the edges of the panel and 3½" deep inside.
IN USING a circular saw, it is desirable to have a rule instantly available. A good way to insure this is to fasten a flexible metal rule to the miter gauge of the saw. It is held with a clip soldered to the case of the rule.
A POWERFUL electromagnet for lifting demonstrations is easily made by utilizing the core of an audio transformer from a discarded radio set. The transformer should be the kind that has laminations shaped like the letters E and I. Take it apart and separate the laminations.
1. Suspend brush in varnish remover deep enough to cover half the metal or leather ferrule. The brush should not rest on the bristle tips. Cover can with paper cone to prevent evaporation and leave until thoroughly softened. 2. Remove brush from can, lay on paper, and use the back of a table knife or a steel scratch brush to remove softened paint.
Dummies Carved by Guild Member TRAVEL TO MANY FOREIGN LANDS
Dummies Carved by Guild Member TRAVEL TO MANY FOREIGN LANDS
IN A SMALL workshop on the north side of Chicago, George Larsen, a member of the Chicago Carvers and Craftsmen’s Club, carves heads for ventriloquist dummies that amuse thousands of people throughout the world. Photographs and letters from foreign ventriloquists give an indication of how far his dummies have traveled.
CONTAINERS in which spools of 35-mm. film are packed have convenient spaces for the writing of information and data, but that gives no assurance that a roll of negatives will always be returned to the correct box. When it is not, whatever method of filing is used will be seriously upset.
AMATEURS who wish to make positive transparencies from their 35-mm. negatives can do so by using their cameras as printers. To do this, place the negative and a length of 35-mm. positive film together, emulsion to emulsion. Then, with the negative facing in, wind the films into a daylight cartridge.
BESIDES holding a camera and all its accessories, this carrying case serves as a portable lighting unit. The original was made from a portable phonograph case obtained from a junk dealer, but any small sample case or suit case may be used if it has a cover as deep as the case itself and at least 3½" deep.
NOVEL photographic greeting cards may be made by using table-top set-ups like the one illustrated. The message is spelled out in letters taken from a package of alphabet-soup noodles and glued on black paper. These clearly formed little letters are also useful in composing short titles for home movies.
TO CONVERT a photograph into a line drawing, trace the portions desired with waterproof India ink. Then bleach out the print in the following bath: 62 grains potassium bichromate, 90 minims sulphuric acid, and 16 ounces water. Wash the paper thoroughly.
DUAL photographs can be successfully taken by setting up a framework in front of a camera as shown in the accompanying drawing. The upper crosspiece of the framework is slotted, and the baseboard is grooved so that a mask can slide from one side to the other.
WHEN a hypo fixing bath has a milky appearance, it-may be due either to an excess of free acid, which decomposes the hypo and precipitates free sulphur, or to insufficient acid. Other causes are insufficient or impure sulphite or careless mixing.
Brilliant Subjects—Distant landscapes and mountains without prominent dark objects in foreground; beach, marine, and snow scenes. Bright Subjects—Scenics with objects in foreground; nearby people in beach, marine, and snow scenes.
Skillful Enlarging Corrects Distorted Building Photos
C. W. RICKMAN
WHEN a camera is tilted upward at a tall building, the resulting picture appears to taper and the building looks as if it were leaning backward. Professional view cameras, to be sure, have a revolving back or lens mount that permits this distortion to be corrected, but the defect is common to all ordinary cameras such as amateurs use.
NOTE: Each of the following diaphram stops is approximately twice as large as the preceding one: f/22, f/16, f/11, f/8, f/5.6, f/4, f/2.8, f/2 (largest). The figures above are lens apertures at 1/25 sec. Therefore, for 1/50 sec., use opening twice as large.
The design and lettering are cut like a stencil, and the color is applied by means of a toothbrush
IF YOU want something novel yet inexpensive in the way of Christmas cards this year, try spatter-painting them yourself with an old toothbrush. The more you spatter on the color, the prettier they will be. The effects are somewhat like linoleum-block work except that the colors are not solid, but broken up into interesting and variegated spatter patterns.
MINERAL oil had been substituted in part for butter fat,” U. S. health officials reported, when they recently had 664 tubs of butter seized and condemned. While not common, such instances do occur, and Federal agencies are vigilant to detect them.
"SAFETY FIRST” in your home laboratory may well include a first-aid bottle of tannic acid solution for burns. To make up the preparation, dissolve one half gram of potassium chloride, one gram of calcium chloride, one gram of salicylic acid, ten and one half grams of sodium chloride, and 100 grams of tannic acid in 1,000 cubic centimeters (or thirty-four fluid ounces) of water.
QUESTION-AND-ANSWER sessions are not confined to the radio. A lot of people ask questions about microscopes and the fascinating business of using them. With the thought that readers may find it helpful to know the answers to the questions I am most frequently asked, I am writing this month’s article in question-and-answer form.
WHEN the two are connected in parallel, or the usual way, a sixty-watt bulb gives about twice as much light as a thirty-watt bulb. Connect them in series, as shown above,, and the thirty-watt bulb will light up brightly, while the bulb of sixty-watt rating barely glows!
DESIGNED SO that it can be attached to the standard of any floor lamp, the radio set illustrated forms a handy auxiliary receiver for living room, bedroom, or den. Mounted on a bridge lamp it provides a radio for card games; attached to a floor lamp beside your favorite chair it puts the evening’s programs at your finger tips; and fastened to a standing lamp in your bedroom it serves as a convenient bedside set.
ARE you having trouble with your broadcast or shortwave receiver ? If you are, study the cures given on this page. They cover seven of the most common radio ailments affecting commercial as well as home-built circuits. In each case, the trouble can be cured easily and quickly.
MOUNTED within its own microphone housing, the amplifying system that operates a new hearing aid for the deaf represents the maximum in compactness. It may be carried in the hand, or worn in a vest pocket or beneath a lapel. Although the housing is unusually small in itself, it contains, besides the microphone and a three-tube amplifier, a volume control and a tone control.
WHEN my new car knocked, I traced the noise to the oil line. I could even feel the pounding by touching the pipe leading to the oil-pressure gauge on the dashboard. The sound obviously was caused by the alternate stopping and releasing of the oil flow from the pump by the drilled crankshaft.
A DISCARDED or second-hand electric windshield wiper in good condition can he readily converted into the power plant for driving a wigwagging automobile stop signal that commands instant attention. Mounted on the rear of a car, it is visible day or night for a considerable distance.
OVERFILLING of automobile batteries mounted under the hood can be the cause of hydraulic-brake failure if the battery acid runs or drips down on the hydraulic line, resulting in corrosion and leakage. If any acid has been spilled in this way in your car, the first thing to do is to take it to a good mechanic who is capable of determining the possible damage.
IT’S not very good for a car to allow it to stand all night in a garage with a couple of inches of snow on its roof that may take hours to melt. I nailed up a piece of heavy carpet along the top of my garage doorway so that it hangs down far enough to act as a brush when the car is driven in, sweeping the snow off the back.
IF YOUR driveway is located at an awkward bend in the road, or on a fairly dark street, so that it is not easy to find at night, the stunt illustrated in the drawings above will be found helpful as you and your friends drive up to your house after dark.
A GOOD place to carry the car owner’s registration certificate is over the sun visor where it can be readily tucked into a small envelope. The envelope can be fastened securely in place by means of a few daubs of rubber cement.
A GOOD way to clean a T-slot is to cut a piece of felt so that it is a snug fit in the bottom section of the slot and leave on a tongue that can be pulled along with pliers. New V-belts intended for multiple operation must necessarily be matched for equal drive or the set has no beneficial properties.
GAUGING the tenderness of green peas before they are canned is the purpose of the “tenderometer,” an instrument developed for use in the canning industry. Measuring maturity by the force required to shear a sample of raw shelled peas between two interlocking grids, it is expected to prove valuable in purchasing peas for canning.
LIGHTWEIGHT shower-bath curtains have an annoying tendency to blow in and even wrap themselves around the body of the bather. This can be prevented by fastening the curtain with vacuum cups to the tub at at least three places along the bottom, as illustrated.
Draftless Window Ventilator for Cold, Stormy Weather
ONE of the simplest ways to provide ventilation in stormy weather is to make a hinged filler strip of wood about 4" wide to fit under the lower sash. If the window is one which must be kept securely locked, a strip of wood may be placed vertically above the lower sash at either side, or a suitable bolt or catch can be installed.
MOST users of adjustable spiral-groove roll-film developing reels are not aware of the fact that these reels can also be effectively used for the development of cut films. The only alteration required—and in some instances even this may not be necessary— is to provide a greater range of adjustment for the reel so that the reel ends can he spaced the right distance apart to accommodate the cut film.
WHEN a time exposure is made and the camera is not rigidly mounted, there is danger that the picture will be slightly blurred because of the vibration of opening and closing the shutter. This can be avoided by holding a piece of dull black card over the lens, but not quite touching it.
RUBBER cement is much favored for paper or photographs because it does not cause wrinkles and the excess can easily be rubbed off. For best results, it must be applied to both surfaces and allowed to dry before the parts are pressed together.
WHEN perfectly dry or in the so-called anhydrous or desiccated form, some photo chemicals, such as sodium carbonate, absorb moisture from the air and change in strength. They are therefore also sold in a form known as “monohydrated”—that is, with sufficient moisture added to make them stable.
A NOVEL way to ornament glass switch plates on the wall is to back them up with photographs. Glass switch plates ordinarily come with a mirror backing, but the silver can be removed with a razor blade without scratching the glass if a little care is taken.
ALTHOUGH this bit-holding ring resembles the ordinary one found on many drill presses, it has the advantage of being easily removed when it is necessary to utilize the maximum capacity of the table or to adjust the table close to the chuck. The holder is cut from a glued-up block consisting of two pieces of five-ply wood.
FREQUENTLY a piece is split off a chair or table leg by the caster shank. When this occurs, a permanent repair may be made as follows: First, glue and brad the piece back into place and allow time for the glue to set firmly. Scrape off any excess glue which may ooze out.